Instead, he will bring his rich coaching experience to the up-and-coming Rain or Shine Elasto Painters, owner of the team’s most exciting backcourt tandem of Gabe Norwood and Sol Mercado.
No less than coach Caloy Garcia confirmed the news to GMANews.TV that Guiao will be joining the Elasto Painters. The five-time champion coach is expected to formalize his entry in Rain or Shine’s camp on Tuesday.
“If it’s Yeng Guiao, I am more than willing to take the backseat and slide down as his assistant," Garcia said in a telephone interview.
According to Garcia, he sounded off to the management the possibility of having Guiao as the next coach of Rain or Shine as early as the holiday season last year.
“I told my bosses if it’s possible to bring in Coach Yeng because if he becomes the next governor of Pampanga, we might have a difficult time bringing him in our team," said Garcia, who also served as an assistant coach to the team’s first coach in the PBA — Leo Austria.
“Tamang-tama rin naman, his contract with Air21 expired at the end of 2010."
Asked about his thoughts on Guiao joining the squad, Garcia added that he’s willing to learn from one of the game’s best.
“I believe I still lack the maturity and I will learn a lot of things from Coach Yeng," said Garcia. “We’re a young team and we’re a team that doesn’t trade a lot. I’m sure coach Yeng will like it here since he will have a chance to develop young players."
Guiao’s contract expired Dec. 31, 2010. There were plans by Air21 management to convince him to stay with the Express, and team manager Allan Gregorio and board governor Johann Ramos met with the former national team head coach.
If it’s Yeng Guiao, I am more than willing to take the backseat and slide down as his assistant. I believe I still lack the maturity and I will learn a lot of things from Coach Yeng.
In the end, Gregorio advised Guiao to accept the Rain or Shine offer.
“I’m also a coach, and if a better opportunity is presented to him, then I will not stop a coach from pursuing it," said Gregorio, who will start running the Express’ practices and will be helped out by Sandy Arespacochaga.
The Express team executive added they’re now reviewing the applicants for the coaching position.
“We will evaluate it and prune down our list, then make a decision," he added.
Should Gregorio be named the head coach of the Express, this will be the first time in PBA history that brothers will call the shots on opposite ends of the floor.
Allan's younger brother, Ryan, is a three-time champion coach who now handles the Meralco Bolts. - KY, GMANews.TV